Goan Reporter News: Goa SCPCR Launches Guidelines For Bal Sabhas

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The Goa State Commission for Protection of Child Rights (GSCPCR) has released the “Guidance Document for Bal Sabhas,” which is a initiative aimed at empowering the voices of our youngest citizens in the democratic process. Crafted with meticulous care, this document serves as a comprehensive manual for organizing and conducting Bal Sabhas across villages and municipalities in Goa, ensuring that children’s voices are heard, valued, and acted upon in the governance of their communities.

The Bal Sabha is envisioned as a democratic forum where children can express their concerns, ideas, and suggestions directly to local governing bodies. This innovative platform is not only about listening to children but actively involving them in decision-making processes that affect their lives and well-being.

Chairperson, Goa State commission for Protection of Child Rights Shri, Peter F. Borges said that “In a world where the voices of children are often overshadowed, the Bal Sabhas stands as a beacon of hope, promising a future where every child’s opinion is a cornerstone in the edifice of our society. By integrating the four cardinal rights of survival, development, protection, and participation, we are laying down the foundation for a society that not only listens to its children but also respects and acts on their views. This document is a testament to Goa’s unwavering commitment to child rights and protection, marking a significant step towards strengthening child protection systems at the grassroots level in Goa.”

The GSCPCR urges the Director of Panchayat and Municipal Administration to disseminate this guidance document to all Panchayats/Municipalities in Goa with a request to conduct at least two Bal Gram Sabhas per year, adhering to the outlined guidelines. This initiative is crucial for reinforcing the child protection framework at the village level, ensuring a holistic and inclusive approach to the welfare and development of children.

The commission also mandates that each Panchayat/Municipality submit a compliance report within 30 days of conducting a Bal Gram Sabha, detailing the proceedings and outcomes. This measure is aimed at monitoring the effectiveness of the initiative and ensuring that the voices of children translate into actionable insights and improvements in their communities.

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